Financial Transaction Tax (Directive)

The tax is to apply to transactions with financial instruments, both in the organised markets and over-the-counter trading. It is to generate revenues for the public purse and to increase the stability of financial markets. The Commission expects EU-wide tax revenues of roughly 57 billion Euros a year. They are to flow wholly or partly into the EU budget through an own resources system of the European Union.


Although the FTT achieves its fiscal target to a certain degree, it clearly misses its main objective. It cannot deter the financial sector from entering into risky business transactions, nor can it prevent future banking crises. The FTT can even jeopardise the stability of the financial markets, as minimum tax rates encourage the leakage of financial transactions within the EU. It is questionable whether a taxation of banks seated in third countries is even admissible at all.